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Her help from toils and watchings hope to find,
From the strong body, and undaunted mind;
If these be wanting on th' embattled plain,
Ye sue the unpropitious maid in vain.
Though in her marble temples taught to blaze
Her dazzling wings the golden dame displays,
And many a talent in due weight was told
To shape her godhead in the curious mould
Shall the rough soldier of himself despair,
And hope for female visions in the air?
What legion sheath'd in iron e'er survey'd
Their darts directed by this winged maid!
Dost thou the power that gives success demand?
'Tis He th' Almighty, and thy own right hand;
Not the smooth nymph, whose locks in knots are twind,
Who, bending, shows her naked foot behind.
Who girds the virgin zone beneath her breast,
And from her bosom heaves the swelling vest.
You have here another Victory* that I fancy Clau-
dian had in his view when he mentions her wings,
palm, and trophy, in the following description. It ap-
pears on a coin of Constantine, who lived about an
age before Claudian, and I believe we shall find that
it is not the only piece of antique sculpture that this
poet has copied out in his descriptions.
cum totis exurgens ardua pennis
Ipsa duci sacras Victoriu panderet ædes,
Et palma viridi gaudens, et amicta trophæis.
CLAUD, de Laud. Stil, lih, 3.
On all her plumage rising when she threw
Her sacred shrines wide open to thy view,
How pleas’d for thee her emblems to display,
With palms distinguish'd, and with trophies gay.
The last of our imaginary beings is Libertyf. In her
left hand she carries the wand that the Latins call the
rudis or vindicta, and in her right the cap of Liberty.
The poets use the same kinds of metaphors to express
Liberty. I shall quote Horace for the first, whom
Ovid has imitated on the same occasion; and for the
donatum jam rude quæris
Mecænas iterum antiquo me includere ludo. Hor. lib. 1. ep. 1.
-tardâ vires minuente senectâ
Me quoque donari jam rude tempus erat. Ov.deTr. lib.4.el.8.
Since bent beneath the load of years I stand,
I too might claim the freedom-giving wand.
Quod te nomine jam tuo saluto
Quem regem, et dominum priùs vocabam,
Nè me direris esse contumacem
Totis pilea sarcinis redemi. MART, lib. 2. epig. 68.
By thy plain name though now addrest,
Though once my king and lord confest,
Frown not: with all my goods I buy
The precious cap of Liberty. I cannot forbear repeating a passage out of Persius, says Cynthio, that in my opinion turns the ceremony of making a freeman very handsomely into ridicule. It seems the clapping a cap on his head and giving him a turn on the heel were necessary circumstances, A slave thus qualified became a citizen of Rome, and was honoured with a name more than belonged to any of his forefathers, which Persius has repeated with a great deal of humour.
Heu steriles veri, quibus una Quiritem
Vertigo facit: hic Dama est, nam tressis agaso,
Vappa, et lippus, et in tenui farragine mendax.
Verterit hunc dominus, momento turbinis erit
Marcus Dama. Papæ! Marco spondente, recusas
Credere tu nummos ? Marco sub Judice palles ?
Marcus dixit, ita est: assigna, Marce, tabellas.
Hæc mera libertas: hanc nobis pilea donant. PERS, sat, 5.
That false enfranchisement with ease is found:
Slaves are made citizens by turning round.
How! replies one, can any be more free?
Here's Dama, once a groom of low degree,
Not worth a farthing, and a sot beside;
So true a rogue, for lying's sake he ly'd:
But, with a turn, a freeman he became;
Now Marcus Dama is his worship’s name.
Good gods! who would refuse to lend a sum,
If wealthy Marcus surety would become!
Marcus is made a judge, and for a proof
Of certain truth, he said it, is enough.
A will is to be prov'd; put in your claim;
'Tis clear, if Marcus has subscrib'd his name.
This is true liberty, as I believe;
What farther can we from our caps receive,
Than as we please without control to live? Mr. DRYDEN, Since you have given us the ceremony of the cap, says Eugenius, I'll give you that of the wand, out of Claudian.
Te fastos ineunte quater, sollennia ludit
Omina libertas, deductum Vindice morem
Ler celebrat, famulusque jugo lacatus herili
Ducitur, et grato remeat securior icta.
Tristis conditio pulsata fronte recedit:
In civem rubuere genæ, tergoque removit
Verbera promissi felir injuria votio CLAUD. de 4. Cons. Hon. The grato ictu and the felir injuria, says Cynthio, would have told us the name of the author, though you had said nothing of him. There is none of all the poets that delights so much in these pretty kinds of contradiction as Claudian. He loves to set his epithet at variance with its substantive, and to surprise his reader with a seeming absurdity. If this poet were well examined, one would find that some of his greatest beauties as well as faults arise from the frequent use of this particular figure.
I question not, says Philander, but you are tired by this time with the company of so mysterious a sort of ladies as those we have had before us. for our diversion, entertain ourselves with a set of riddles, and see if we can find a key to them among the ancient poets. The first of them, says Cynthio, is a ship under sail, I suppose it has at least a metaphor or moral precept for its cargo. This, says Philander, is an emblem of Happiness *, as you may see by the inscription it carries in its sails. We find the same device to express the same thought in several of the poets: as in Horace, when he speaks of the modera
# Second series, fig. 1,
tion to be used in a flowing fortune, and in Ovid when he reflects on his past happiness.
Rebus angustis animosus atque
Fortis appare: supienter idem
Contrahes vento nimiùm secundo
HOR. od. 20. lib. 2.
When Fortune sends a stormy wind,
Then show a brave and present mind;
And when with too indulgent gales
She swells too much, then furl thy sails. Mr. CREECH.
Nominis et famæ quondam fulgore trahebar,
Dum tulit antennas aura secunda meus. Ov.deTris.lib.5.el. 12.
En ego, non paucis quondam munitus amicis,
Dum flavit velis aura secunda meis. Id. epist. ex. ponto 3. lib.3.
I liv'd the darling theme of ev'ry tongue,
The golden idol of th' adoring throng;
Guarded with friends, while Fortune's balmy gales
Wanton'd auspicious in my swelling sails. You see the metaphor is the same in the verses as in the medal, with this distinction only, that the one is in words and the other in figures. The idea is alike in both, though the manner of representing it is different. If
you would see the whole ship made use of in the same sense by an old poet, as it is here on the medal, you may find it in a pretty allegory of Seneca.
Fata si liceat mihi
Fingere arbitrio meo,
Temperen zephyro levi
Vela, né pressæ gravi
Spiritu antennæ tremante
Ienis ad modicè fluens
Aura, nec vergens latus,
Ducat intrepidam ratem. Sen, Edip, chor, açt. 4.
My fortune might I form at will,
My canvas zephyrs soft should fill
With gentle breath, lest ruder gales
Crack the main-yard, or burst the sails.
By winds that temperately blow
The bark should pass secure and slow,
Nor scare me leaning on her side:
But smoothly cleave th' unruffled tide.
After having considered the ship as a metaphor, we may now look on it as a reality, and observe in it the make of the old Roman vessels, as they are described among the poets. It is carried on by oars and sails at the same time.
Sive opus est velis minimam bene currit ad
auram, Sive opus est remo remige carpit iter. Ov. De Trist. lib. 1.el. 10. The poop of it has the bend that Ovid and Virgil mention.
Puppique recurva. Ibid. lib. i. el. 3.
VIRG. You see the description of the pilot, and the place he sits on,
in the following quotations.
Ipse gubernator puppi Palinurus ab alta. VIRG. Æn. lib.5..
Ipsius ante oculos ingens à vertice pontus
In puppim ferit, excutitur, pronusque magister
Volvitur in caput.
Id. Æn. lib. i.
Orontes' bark, that bore the Lycian crew,
(A horrid sight) ev'n in the hero's view,
From stem to stern, by waves was overborne;
The trembling pilot, from his rudder torn,
Was headlong hurl'd;-
Oblitus decorisque sui sociúmque salutis,
In mare præcipitem puppi deturbat ab alta:
Ipse gubernaculo rector subit.
Id. Æn. lib, 5.
Mindless of others lives, (so high was grown
His rising rage) and careless of his own:
The trembling dotard to the deck he drew,
And hoisted up, and overboard he threw;
This done, he seiz'd the helm
Mr.DRYDEN. I have mentioned these two last passages of Virgil
, because I think we cannot have so right an idea of the pilot's misfortune in each of them, without observing the situation of his post, as appears in ancient coins. The figure you see on the other end of the ship is a Triton, a man in his upper parts, and a fish below, VOL. V